Yediyurappa quits as Karnataka CM

Bengaluru: After months of speculation, Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa today resigned from the top post.

The Lingayat leader had on Sunday announced that he would take the decision on his future as Karnataka CM on 26 July when his government completed two years in the State.

Today, he put an end to the speculation over his continuation at the helm in Karnataka at a function in Bengaluru to mark two years in office by announcing his decision to resign from the post.

‘I have decided to go to Raj Bhavan after lunch and hand over my resignation. This is not out of sadness, but out of happiness,’ an emotionally charged Yediyurappa announced at the end of his speech at the function in Banquet Hall of Vidhana Soudha.

In an emotional speech during which he broke down a couple of times, Yediyurappa said, ‘I am thankful to the high command. I am thankful to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah for having allowed me to be in office for two years despite the rule of no power for those above 75 years.’

‘It was an agniparikshe from day one,’ he said. ‘As soon as I took charge as CM, the state witnessed unprecedented floods. But the Centre didn’t allow me to form my Cabinet. I had to handle the situation all by myself,’ he said.

‘I pray with God that this Modi-Shah duo should win again. Modi and Shah should win, become PM and take the country forward,’ he said.

Yediyurappa said BJP stalwart Atal Bihari Bajpayee wanted him to become a Union Minister. ‘I told him that I want to stay in Karnataka and build the party,’ he said in tears.

Meanwhile, Karnataka Governor Thawar Chand Gehlot has accepted Yediyurappa’s resignation, and asked him to continue as caretaker CM till the next CM takes oath.

Sources said BJP will send an observer to Karnataka soon and the central party leadership and the state party leadership will discuss the next face for the CM post.

NT Bureau